Protest the proposed MTA photo ban--Dec. 18, 2004

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David A. Goldfarb

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A "flash mob" in protest of the proposed regulations banning photography in the NYC transit system is planned for Dec. 18, 2004 at 1:00 p.m. Info at:

http://cfny.org/
 

bobfowler

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DAMN!

I wish I knew about this earlier, I would have kept the date and time open. Unfortunately, I can't make it...
 

mark

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Wrong end of the country, but snap a few shots for me.
 

bjorke

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Make a Difference

The flash mob will surely be fun and will draw press. People who do not participate in it can still make a difference -- even if they don't live in NYC.

See this photopermit message (still on the front page of photopermit.org) for more info on what you can do.
 

rbarker

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Bjorke - thanks for the link. Excoriating e-mail comment sent to the MTA.
 

Andy K

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Good luck folks. It'd be great to see some of the results thumbnailed here!
 
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David A. Goldfarb

David A. Goldfarb

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Here are a few quick scans from the protest--

http://www.echonyc.com/~goldfarb/temp/mta.html

Not a huge turnout--maybe 40 or 50 people. But there was an interesting contingent of photobloggers there, who are their own lively photographic community. Mostly shooting digital, but there were a few others shooting film.

Here's one of the more interesting photoblogs, with links to other bloggers who were at the event--

Dead Link Removed
 

Dave Wooten

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Thanks Dave for the update-I guess when I am there in Feb there will be no photography?
Dave in Vegas
 
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David A. Goldfarb

David A. Goldfarb

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The cops we encountered didn't seem too enthusiastic about enforcing the ban, if it is enacted. You can buy plenty of books even at Grand Central Terminal with detailed photographs of the construction of the subway system, plans and anything else an enterprising terrorist might want.
 

jd callow

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I received a xmass catalogue form a philanthropic photography society this past month that featured multiple gifts depicting the Brooklyn bridge. I thought it was pretty funny and a bit of a tongue in cheek slap at the current restrictions.

Meanwhile, on my recent trip to the big apple we were stopped by the police, our names and ID taken and checked (and probably added to a list) because we were shooting on the street in Queens. God knows that of all the god forsaken patches of real estate in the USA Queens is the most desirable terrorist target.

I can't wait for my next international trip. I suspect I better wear clean underwear...
 
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I thought the MTA announced that they were going to do away with the ban. Am I dreaming that? It was about 3-4 weeks ago I thought I read about it in the newspaper. I think the ban is still in effect but they were going to rescind it.
 
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David A. Goldfarb

David A. Goldfarb

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The ban has never been in effect. It was proposed, withdrawn from consideration, and now has been proposed again.
 

lee

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man, I just looked at the photos David shot of the protest and that is the scarriest group of malcontents I have seen in a long while. Nice job David. :smile:


lee\c
 
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David A. Goldfarb

David A. Goldfarb

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Thanks, Lee. The one with the sign was sporting an A-1, and you KNOW she can do some damage with that thing.
 

rbarker

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David - nice job on the reportage photos. It's unfortunate that someone didn't show up with a 12x20 on a tripod with dolly wheels. I wonder how they'd feel about flash powder. :wink:
 

Sean

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As someone who moved overseas before the American way of life changed, it's almost surreal to read about things like this going on back home. Where is the final line going to be drawn?
 

jd callow

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Sean said:
As someone who moved overseas before the American way of life changed, it's almost surreal to read about things like this going on back home. Where is the final line going to be drawn?

I honestly believe that the citizens of the USA are not prepared to defend their founding values or the 'American way of life' -- the way of life taught to school children: liberty, justice, equality, pursuit of happiness, etc -- but are all to willing to protect their fantasy of material entitlement. At some point I would hope that the realization will come that real freedom requires real risks and that freedom trumps risks every time. Until then more threats, or attacks will prove existing policy inadequate and sterner measures will be applied and when these prove ineffectual even sterner measures will be applied and when...
 

Alex Hawley

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David A. Goldfarb said:
The cops we encountered didn't seem too enthusiastic about enforcing the ban, if it is enacted. You can buy plenty of books even at Grand Central Terminal with detailed photographs of the construction of the subway system, plans and anything else an enterprising terrorist might want.

And never mind TV shows like Modern Marvels on the History Channel.

Nice shots David. Too bad you missed Life Magazine by about 30 years. Did you use the 4x5 Graphic?

This does seem highly absurd. YoSama YoMama must be getting a good chuckle out of it.

It finally dawned on me today why we haven't won the war yet. We haven't gotten the Cartoons involved. We need to enlist Popeye and Bugs Bunny and get them on the job. Well, it worked against Hitler and Tojo. Better get the Three Stooges going too.
 

Andy K

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mrcallow said:
I honestly believe that the citizens of the USA are not prepared to defend their founding values or the 'American way of life' -- the way of life taught to school children: liberty, justice, equality, pursuit of happiness, etc -- but are all to willing to protect their fantasy of material entitlement. At some point I would hope that the realization will come that real freedom requires real risks and that freedom trumps risks every time. Until then more threats, or attacks will prove existing policy inadequate and sterner measures will be applied and when these prove ineffectual even sterner measures will be applied and when...
That is not solely a US malady. We have the same disease on this side of the pond too. Compulsory 'Biometric' ID Cards for everyone in the UK, for the first time ever in 'peacetime' in our history, with a £1000 fine for refusal to carry one. And jumped up little Hitlers everywhere ready to object to photography on the loosest grounds of 'security'.
 

Les McLean

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Excellent pictures David, thanks for keeping us informed. I'll be in New York next May so at least I come prepared to meet with some agro.

We in the UK are beginning to have similar problems in making photographs in public transport areas. I did my usual street photography workshop in Brighton in August and was stopped photographing in Brighton Railway station by the British Transport Police on the grounds that the group I was leading could have been photographing the station for terrorist purposes. There were 17 of us carrying about £60,000 worth of Nikon and Canon equipment and when I suggested to the police seargent that had I been a terrorist I would not have come mob handed but would probably have used my mobile phone camera to get the info she just about went balistic with me.
 
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David A. Goldfarb

David A. Goldfarb

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Alex Hawley said:
Did you use the 4x5 Graphic?

Thanks, Alex. I used a Bronica S2A, Nikkor 50mm/3.5 wide open at 1/15-1/30 sec., Tri-X (TX) 120 at 800 in Acufine, and three backs for quick film changes so I could reload during the lulls. I'd have picked up some 220 since Bronica backs are switchable, but I seem to have a lot of 120 in the freezer. I shot around 50 frames.

The waist-level finder was great for over-the-head shots in the train.
 
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David A. Goldfarb

David A. Goldfarb

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Thanks, Les. Be sure to let me know when you're in town. Maybe we can organize an APUG gathering.
 

gr82bart

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Sorry I missed this event. When I moved to the area, I didn't even know that photography is forbidden in the MTA. I found out when I pulled my Nikon F4e out and wanted to shoot some SCALA in the subway. After one of my first meetings at my company's NYC HQ, a bunch of us went out afterwards to do some sightseeing - around mid afternoon. Two NYC cops pulled me aside and wanted to know who I was, why I was taking pictures, etc... They let me go after about 15 minutes of questioning and some protestations from the group I was in. I often wonder what the outcome would have been if I were alone and certainly not part of a group working for a very large well known multi-national company happened to be HQed in NYC.

The several other times I was treated this way, were in so-called banana countries where freedoms are considerably curtailed. Interesting, eh?

Regards, Art.
 

mfobrien

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I was in NYC in April, first time since 1973. City really has changed for the better, but I was really pissed when I walked past some federal bldg and I had a camera around my neck. A guard started screaming at me "No pictures!" (As if I wanted to photograph it -- it was so ugly) I really felt like telling him...who paid for this building? My ****ing tax dollars. It also recalled scenes I had read about from people that visited the USSR and other eastern-bloc countries before the downfall of the commie system. A government that treats its citizens like terrorists, becomes the terror. Until we stop giving up our civil liberties we are in for more of the same. Maybe eventually common sense will prevail.
 
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